When A House Finds You

In summer of 2020 I was unexpectedly offered to buy my dream home in the Hudson Valley. November 12th marked the one year anniversary of me owning this house, I would like to share this magical story:

In fall of 2015 I found the listing for Maitopia on Airbnb. I gasped and within minutes booked a stay that was a good 6 months out, the first weekend I could get my hands on. 

I’ll never forget the moment when we entered the driveway, in spring of 2016. There she was, this modern, tiny beauty. I could barely breathe of excitement. As we got out of the car my daughter noticed the Swiss cross flag on the shed and jokingly said: “This house was waiting for you, mommy!”

We kept coming back to Maitopia, 1-3 times a year, for long weekends and I became Instagram-DM friends with the owners. Every time I stayed, I would post about the house, gushing about how perfect it was and thanking the internet for the sharing economy. What a magical world we live in!

Then, on June 17, 2020 the owners messaged me saying “We are thinking about selling the house!”

I remember jumping from my chair, screaming “OMG!” My daughter thought something bad happened and looked at me with a look of horror. “What’s wrong, mommy?” I said “Heath and Sarah-Mai want to sell Maitopia!”

I typed back, in all caps: I WISH I COULD BUY IT!

Their response blew me away: “Well, we were hoping you’d say that, as we can only sell the house to someone who loves it as much as we do and we think that person is you. We won’t put in on the market!”

I felt so many feelings.

I was in no place of buying a house. Or so I thought. With the pandemic raging in NYC, I was terrified of losing everything I had built over the past 15 year. The last thing on my mind was buying a house. I was sure I couldn’t afford it.

Yet I knew in my heart of hearts that this property found me. So I examined my limiting beliefs, tried to find solutions on how it could work, and things started falling into place.

About a week later, I asked the owners, whom I had never met, if they’d meet me on the sidewalk outside their Upper West Side home. 

I shared with them that I didn’t take it lightly that they offered the house to me. After all, it was their labor of love. They designed it. They built it. It was an extension of them.

I handed them a plant and my offer (love) letter, which was wrapped in drawings of the house that my kids made.

It was a powerfully loving moment. On both ends. Some tears were shed.

(This process taught me so much, as it made me think that if I ever were to sell one of my companies or anything else I have built, this is how I would want this transaction to go down. Loving. Heart-centered. Thoughtful.)


A few days later they let us know they accepted our offer. My kids and I were estatic, dancing through our Brooklyn apartment!

The mortgage journey that followed after was not the most pleasant but we got there eventually. Lots of lawyer-y non-heart-centered stuff followed too. Part of the process, I guess. Deep breaths.

And here we are, a year later.

I have been a homeowner for 365 days. I admit, I have dealt with more broken things than I want to acknowledge, but I am starting to really understand the house. My friend Sue once said that the house is teaching me how to take care of it. I feel that.

This also means I have been an Airbnb host for 365 days straight. And let me tell you, I have grown as a host. (I have so much to share on this front, but that’s for another time.)


Today, I just want to revel in the fact that this house found me. It is my happy place. My heart swells up every time I enter the driveway.

Thank you for choosing me, Maitopia.

PS: Yes, I do rent the house, you can see the listing here. Please note I am slow about opening up the calendar, I do it a few months at a time. If you want to see more photos, you can check the Instagram account here and a walk through of the house is here. Sarah-Mai and Heath who built the house have since created a new magical home in the Northfork and are soon going to be renting that one out too. You can see it here.

Meet Beau

It’s been a bit quiet here and you might be wondering why? Well, this family is growing. We are picking up our rescue today and have been busy preparing for the new family member. (Shelter adoptions are no joke in NYC. Three rounds of interviews, a home visit and then meeting the pup!)

We are ANXCITED! This is our first dog and we realize we have a lot to learn. When we went to see Beau I asked the foster mom what she needs most. She pondered for a moment and then said: LOVE, a whole lot of love. I exhaled and said: “I got plenty of that. We’re good!”

Also, I think I have watched every Cesar Milan video out there by now. If you have adopted a rescue or own a dog and have tips, please be so kind and drop them in a comment below.

Onward to our new chapter! WOOF!

Update: Sharing some first impressions with her on Instagram, look for the Pup Emoji story highlight. (circle at underneath my bio)

Paradise

“Dogs are our link to paradise.”
– Milan Kundera

CreativeMornings on Oprah

My heart is overflowing with all of the feelings: The story of CreativeMornings is featured in an article on Oprah today.

Thank you Jon Levy for generously writing an entire chapter about us in your book You’re Invited.

You can read the article here.

I will now go and cry and dance in my living room and send oodles of gratitude to our global volunteer community for making this happen.

The Kind One

On Monday morning, right before I dropped off my son at school, I got a text from my sister saying my dad wasn’t well.

A few hours later I found myself on a plane to Switzerland and arrived at the nursing home just in time to say good-bye. My sister, her husband and I were gifted the experience to witness the sacred moment of my dad’s passing.

All his life, my dad believed in and studied reincarnation and in particular the moment the soul leaves the body. Here he was, living it.

My sister and I have learned so much from him just by overhearing him talk about death. (He had an entire library on this topic and I remember reading books by Elisabeth Kübler-Ross at 16!) Yet, as much as I knew about the process of dying, nothing prepares you for being in the presence of death.

That sacred moment of that last breath, when that deep quiet hits. And you find yourself crying in ways you never have.

It felt as if his soul pulled mine out to give it a squeeze and then let it bounce back into my body.

My dad was a force. A man of many interests and talents. A successful (and ruthless) entrepreneur, yet a soul that got gentler as he got older. I often described him as a ball of love in these past few years.

As he aged he became blind and eventually needed to leave his beloved house to live in a nursing home. Even though in younger years he would moan and complain about a bad cold, in this stage of his life he, with so much of his body giving out, he never complained. New nursing staff, not familiar with his name yet, would refer to him as “the kind one”.

My dad has shown me what it means to dream big, to live a courageous creative life. And in the end, he taught me the lesson that life is one big journey of finding back to your truest self, being and living love. He found it. He lived it. (Maybe not in the early years, but definitely at the end!)

What a blessing to witness his passing.

I miss you, dad.

Ps: Please call your parents, if you still can.

This photo was taken a mere 5 weeks ago, when my kids and I traveled to the Swiss Alps.

“Whatever you do, do not close!”

I recently shared over on my Instagram that so much of my energy these days is spent on catching the moment my thoughts start getting anxious.

When I catch myself starting to fear-worry-spiral, I take deep breaths and remind myself of all the blessings and of what is going right.

I had one of these moments last week while food shopping and the simple act of taking a selfie with my kids snapped me right out of it.

Michael Singer of ‘The Untethered Soul’ once said “whatever you do, don’t close” and it has become my daily mantra. (You can hear him talk on this in the above video!)

How do you all stay in your hearts these days?

TeuxDeux Got a Tune Up (Hello, Android Users!)

In 2010 I accidentally, for funsies, created a simple to-do app with my studiomate Cameron Koczon. We jokingly called it TeuxDeux. This trusty companion has kept us organized ever since!

A few weeks after building it, and just Cameron and I using it, friends kept asking to get in on it. We decided to make it available to the public and has since attracted an incredibly loyal and committed fan base of humans who love to cross things off.

The concept is simple: Make an app that feels as close to a paper list as possible, but that is with you at every step of the way: On the go on your phone but also ready to keep you organized when you work on your computer. (The secret is to set your browser landing page to teuxdeux.com so you’re being reminded what you need to do every time you open a browser window!)

Cameron and his team spent the past few months rebuilding the app from scratch and, drumrolls please, added the long awaited Android app! (iPhone users, we gotchu too.)

If you’re familiar with TeuxDeux you’ll notice the new and improved user interface on the app and the much faster and reliable syncing thanks to a complete rebuild of the back-end.

I love this app and I am grateful it is in such capable hands with Cameron and his team: Try it for free!

Curious Elixirs

I am currently on day 54 of trying to experience myself and my life sans alcohol. (My goal is 90 days!) What an interesting journey this is, experiencing myself without ever escaping with a drink. I feel a bit like an onion, slowly peeling layers off, discovering new feelings and sides of me I didn’t know existed.

My friends recently introduced me to the non-alcoholic and delicious Curious Elixirs Cocktails. I am so glad they did! Number 2, pictured above, is my favorite! (I wish it contained less sugar.)

If you have been on a similar journey, what are your go to non-alcoholic drinks when socializing with friends?

Make Sure You’re Inspired By Your Own Story



This is the first time I am sharing the talk I gave in November of 2019 at the House of Beautiful Business in Lisbon. (Whispers: It was the first time one of my talks garnered a standing ovation. It must have hit a nerve!)

In my talk, I tell the story of how CreativeMornings came to be and I am appealing to all creative manifesters to step up, give a damn and go beyond the low-vibration game of success.

I believe we are in a time of awakening and more business leaders are shifting from a purely analytical approach to running their business to a more heart-centered approach. I am here for it!

But most of all, my message to everyone was simple: Whatever you do, make sure you’re inspired by your own story.

(A big thank you to the team of House of Beautiful Business for letting me post the audio of the talk. And no, there is no video recording.)

First Time Voter

21 years ago I moved to NYC not knowing it would become my forever home.⁣

Two months ago, I became a US citizen, during a pandemic nonetheless.⁣

Today I voted for the first time, after two decades of paying taxes, building businesses and and raising my children in the USA.⁣

It feels good to citizen.

Please exhale!

I have been holding my breath since March. While trying to keep my companies alive and making sure my kids feel emotionally safe. ⁣

I am done holding my breath. ⁣

“At any point in our lives, we can choose to be happy, no matter the circumstances,” my wise friend @suefan once said. ⁣

Think about it. ⁣

At any time you can choose love over fear. ⁣

I refuse to let 2020 go down as an unlived year.⁣

I hereby exhale and surrender to what is. ⁣

I am going to breathe deeply and actively look for and celebrate anything that brings me joy:⁣

Be it this imperfectly perfect heart-shaped tomato.

Rollerskaters dancing. (Check my Instagram story highlight titled HAPPY) ⁣

Tending to my plants.⁣

Sitting with my neighbors on my stoop.⁣. …


Given that 2020 is one big dumpster fire, I am trying to think of joy-producing ideas that up the ante. ⁣

Here’s one that made me giggle: What if we muster up all of our courage and confess to our secret crushes?

“Hi [insert name],⁣

2020 sucks. But I figured it would make you happy to know that I have been secretly crushing on you.”⁣

Can you imagine how that would make your day? ⁣

There are 124 days left in 2020. Let’s live a little. Let’s be warriors of joy. ⁣

PS: Please, exhale. ⁣

(originally posted over on my Instagram account)

I Need To Do Better

Thank you for this gentle yet powerful call to action, Anisa Makhoul. I have to do better.

Black Lives Matter.

Call Paul

Such a pleasure to be in conversation with Paul Jarvis on his podcast Call Paul talking about how this moment in time has affected me personally and my various businesses.

Some of my Favorite Personal Blogs

My blog is turning 15 today. Maintaining this little corner on the internet has been one of the most rewarding projects ever. I wish more people would go back to owning their content, maintaining their own, well curated corner of the internet. Some of the folks that are doing that and I consistently go back to are:

Jason Kottke

Chris Glass

Christopher Jobson

Jonnie Waldman

Bailey

Kevin Kelly

Frank Chimero

Seth Godin

Maria Popova

What personal blogs do you go back to regularly?

Let’s bring blogrolls back!

Happy my 15th blog-iversary to you! Thank you for reading. I appreciate you.

What My Professional Life Feels Like In This Moment In Time

Sales is a Transfer of Enthusiasm

“My friend once pointed out how negatively I spoke about sales. She looked at me and said: “Tina, selling is a transfer of enthusiasm. Nothing else.” That was a game changer for me.”
— yours truly

Life Cycle

I am hoping to come out of this pandemic with a new sense of self, ready to fly. Beautifully illustrated with this Tattly by August Lamm.

How Are You?

In The Presence Of Truth

How Couples Meet

This graph from a Standford University Paper on “How Couples Meet” caught my attention. ⁣

Having been single for a few years now, it seems as if apps have become the socially accepted and expected way to meet a partner. But what if the way apps work and feel is really not your jam?⁣

I am determined to help reverse that “meet through friends” graph. ⁣

When you get introduced to someone via a friend, there is instant common ground and trust. Tapping into the “web of love” as my friend Sharon Lee calls it, is where the magic happens. When a friend introduces me to someone she/he holds in high regard and loves, I show up differently, open-hearted and less garded. ⁣(By the way, this also works in a work context!)

When you meet a stranger on an app it takes a lot of hard emotional work to figure out if that person can be trusted, is a good human, is who they say they are. ⁣

Looking back, when I was still married, I realize I was so busy being married and coupled, I didn’t pay attention to who was single in my circle of friends and if I could help make an introduction.⁣

Seeing now just how hard it this to meet someone, I wish I helped my single friends more. ⁣

The IRL enthusiast that I am, and struggling with dating apps, I started asking my friends if they can think of a single friend they *love*. If they do, I ask them to write me a little paragraph about them, share their name and email so so can add them to my ever growing secret list of wonderful singles. Then they get invited to fun small gatherings. We had one so far and it was an absolutely delightful event. We are not labeling them as a singles event, we just tell them in the beginning that we all have one thing in common and they’ll probably figure out by the end of the night what that is. We are just getting started with these, Kyle and Christina are with me on the organizing committee. Best team ever.⁣

Let’s bring back IRL and reverse that graph by tapping into our “web of love”.⁣

(You can read the Stanford Study here: Disintermediating your friends © Michael Rosenfeld, Stanford University *, 2019)

A Love Letter to My Lawyer

(click to see the entire thread)

Lawyers get a bad rep. That bums me out. I have been working with the same lawyer for the last 14 years and I don’t think I would be where I am today without him. I had a bit of a “I love my lawyer so much” gratitude wave come over me yesterday so I channeled it into a Twitter Thread.

Kyle’s additional response put the biggest smile on my face, it really shows what a good human my lawyer Jerald is.

Naming Plants

“Do your plants have names?” I was asked over dinner this past weekend. I shook my head. I couldn’t help but feel like I was a bad plant mom. The next morning, I woke up and spent an hour thoroughly overthinking and finding a name for my green friends. A weirdly satisfying experiment.

Now, I keep a list of potential names for new plants. One of them, I just added today, is Leif.

Thinking Out Loud: Compliments are Rocket Fuel

You spreading the word about a project/company/product you love makes a difference. Don’t just think a compliment, put it out in the universe. It’s rocket fuel for makers.

My Most Personal Talk To Date

Tina Roth-Eisenberg – new title from The Do Lectures on Vimeo.

This summer, attending the Do Lectures in Wales, I gave the most personal talk of my life. I talk about my divorce and my spiritual journey as an entrepreneur. I admit, I am a bit nervous sharing this. Deep breaths.